As a single woman in my early 30s, I can safely say I understand the importance of friendship. Of course, it may have taken a few years to get to this understanding, but I know now how to prioritize my friendships and lean on others more than myself. A small challenge for some, but I can assure you this is big growth for me. To all the strong, self-reliant, and independent ladies reading this thinking, “I can do it all on my own,” let me share from my own journey that this might not always be the case. I genuinely believe that my friends have played significant role in my life, and I wouldn’t have come this far without them.
“Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” - Ecclesiastes 4:12
Without a plan or a job, I took the plunge to move to a new city almost 7 years ago. I had a level of faith in those first few years living in Austin, but my lifestyle wasn’t congruent with the bible. By my 3rd year of living in Texas, everything was about to change. I had an encounter with Jesus and entered one of the most joyful seasons of my life. I plugged into a church and started serving, got baptized, and even met a God-fearing man that I thought I was to marry. In hindsight, I can see now why God provided such a deep community of women, because the next chapter I was about to enter was going to be quite a doozy. Before I could blink, the engagement and relationship were called off, the pandemic hit, the church doors closed, and I was left to assess the wreckage that laid before me. Two things became very clear, I had to lean on my faith in God, and my friends for help.
“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends.” - John 15:12-13
By the grace of God, I was never alone in that season. My friends were there through the good, the bad, and the ugly. And let me tell you, it definitely got ugly. When it comes to meaningful friendships, that’s what you should expect. True friends shouldn’t look at you differently when things get tough, they should look at you like Jesus would.
We will reap what we sow.
Through laughter, late movie nights, encouraging prayer calls, and long tearful hugs, my friends sowed into me. They helped heal my swollen heart and I could finally see through the wreckage. My personal testimony of why godly friendships should be a priority in every person’s adult life. No matter what you may be walking through, and I pray it’s “the good,” hold your friendships close and make them a priority. If God can bring these precious women in my life who see me better than I see myself on occasion, He can do it for you too.
S T E P H T H O M S E N
Steph currently resides in downtown Austin,Tx with her 1-year-old Doberman named Lettuce but will be shortly moving to Phoenix to be closer to family. She is a Divisional Trainer for Apartment Life, a faith-based community building non-profit, where she encourages, leads, and trains new teams in the pipeline in South Texas. Fun fact, she prefers using chopsticks over forks when she eats! If you’d like to stay connected with Steph, you can find her on insta @stephlovessun.